Kenya Reports 1,020 New Coronavirus Cases; Positivity Rates Continue Rising

Covid-19 positivity rate at 29.6pc as Kenya records 1,020 new cases

The Ministry of Health and WHO Kenya training frontline healthcare workers from Nairobi County on proper techniques for collecting COVID-19 specimens for testing & use of Personal Protective Equipment. PHOTO I MOH Kenya

Kenya’s overall tally of coronavirus infections reached 264,727 with an additional 1,020  cases being reported on Monday by the ministry of health.

The ministry said the cases were from a sample size of 3,444 tested in the last 24 hours. 

“The positivity rate is now at 29.6 per cent,” the ministry said. The highest in a span of one week. The country’s cumulative tests conducted so far are 2,933,764.

The ministry says no death has been reported within the period from the current 5,353. Total recoveries now stand at 249,315 after 19 patients recovered from the disease. 

A total of 288 patients are admitted in various health facilities countrywide, while 5,631 patients are on Home Based Isolation and Care.

“Sixteen (16) patients are in the ICU, nine of them are on ventilatory support while another seven are on supplemental oxygen. No patients are on observation,” the ministry says. 

Dr Ahmed Yakub Kalebi, Founder and former Group Managing Director, CEO & Chief Consultant Pathologist at Lancet Group of Laboratories East Africa said via his Twitter feed, that from the data, literally 1/3 of the people getting tested are likely infected and likely to infect others. 

Boom Highest ever reported daily national aggregated positivity rate at 29.6 per cent meaning literally 1/3 people walking the streets are likely infected and likely to infect others. The Omicron surge is unprecedented. Hopefully, hospitalizations & deaths will stay relatively low.”

On an increased surge of positivity rate, he differs from Dr Lukoye Atwoli, Dean AKU Medical College, East Africa, who had projected Kenya’s COVID-19 positivity rate to peak between 45-55 per cent over the coming 1-2 weeks.

According to Dr Ahmed, “It’s unlikely we’ll reach 35 per cent positivity rate in  Kenya as the Omicron wave is surging too rapidly and will soon burn itself out fast too, reaching the inflection point soon. The peak Omicron positivity rate from South Africa didn’t even hit 40 per cent though they’re more vaccinated,” he said. 

“So far, there is no evidence that Omicron is more dangerous than the other variants and so the government should just scale up the vaccinations and adherence to the health protocols,” Githinji Gitahi, the CEO of Amref Health Africa International, said.

“Hospitalisations and deaths are still low but the healthcare should be ready in case of any eventuality.”

In terms of the ongoing Covid-19 vaccination campaign, as of December 19th 2021, a total of 8,902,539 vaccines had so far been administered across the country. Of these, 5,310,496 were partially vaccinated while those fully vaccinated were 3,592,043.

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